I have always wanted to study abroad during my time in College, particularly in Italy. Being able to go to Rome for a study abroad trip was a truly amazing experience. I believe that every student in college should be able to study abroad at least once in their time at school. It is a truly amazing experience to be able to learn about a place and then be able to see it. That makes the knowledge gained that much more memorable and meaningful.

In Italy, we had a full itinerary and saw so many places in so few days. They were long, tiring days, but it was amazing to see all the sights and be able to immerse myself in the culture.

Some of my favorite places include the Domus Aurea, Vatican City, and the smaller tows outside of Rome. The Domus Aurea, or Nero’s Golden House, was very interesting to me, particularly because excavations had just recently started, and it was difficult for the public to be able to tour it because it was only open once a week. The Golden House was Nero’s extravagant home during his reign as emperor. Now it is buried underground and, even though it is empty because the relics have all been moved to museums, it is still a wonder to look at because of its enormous size and the frescos that remain on the walls.

Vatican City was another of my favorite places to visit because Rome was the birthplace of Catholicism and being able to see that part of history was incredible. Also being able to see Michelangelo’s paintings The Creation of Adam and The Last Judgement in person was absolutely incredible because I have seen pictures and studied these paintings, but never imagined being able to see them in person. On a more laid-back day, we went to a few small towns outside of Rome. One of these towns was called Nemi, and is known for their tiny, and very tasty strawberries. While we were there, our tour guide gave us a brief history and then let us roam through the town. We went to some local shops and a bakery where we bought pastries made with the strawberries. It was also by a lake that was made from the mouth of a dormant volcano. It was a beautiful lake and beautiful scenery as the town was on a mountain.

These are just a few of my favorite moments from the trip. This educational and cultural experience is something that I enjoyed being a part of. The World-Strides company made the trip easy, fun, and I would definitely travel with them again. I would like to study abroad again and go to another place in order to further my education outside of the classroom.

Morgan Olivio is majoring in Psychology. Morgan spent Spring Break 2019 in Rome, Italy as part of a faculty-led trip for a Classics 1200 course. 

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